Africa’s newest nation, South Sudan, has established a national power company to spearhead investments in the energy sector as part of measures to rebuild the country, which was ravaged by years of war.
The Southern Sudan Electricity Corporation, which will fall under the Ministry of Energy and Mining, will oversee the energy subsector, with its mandates being the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of elec-tricity.
“It was necessary that we establish a com-pany to spearhead the development of the energy sector, which is critical to the rebuilding of South Sudan,” says Electricity and Dams Deputy Minister Lawrence Loku Moyu.
South Sudan, which attained independence in January after seceding from Sudan, is facing a daunting task in terms of developing electricity infrastructure.
With only 25 MW of installed electricity generation capacity currently, only 1% of the country’s nine-million people have access to electricity, and these are mainly in the capital city, Juba.
This is despite the fact that the country is has vast potential to generate electricity from sources like hydro, along the Nile, solar and geothermal.
Already South Sudan is undertaking feasibility studies for various huge hydropower projects with a combined capacity of 2 000 MW. The planned projects include Fula (890 MW), Shukoli (235 MW), Lakki (410 MW) and Bedden (570 MW).
Also planned are small hydro plants with capacities ranging between 3 MW and 11 MW.
In the geothermal arena, South Sudan plans to partner with Kenya to exploit the resource potential estimated at 2 500 MW. In January, officials from South Sudan’s Ministry of Energy and Mining visited Kenya on a fact-finding mission.
As a short-term measure, South Sudan has started negotiations with Ethiopia with the intention of importing about 100 MW.